Mavic 2010 at Eurobike

New computers, wheels, clothes and shoes

Mavic, France’s very own Big Yellow Taxi of wheels, components and neutral tech support, unveiled a slew of new goodies at Eurobike, from wheels and computers to shoes and clothing.

“I could tell you all the details, but it would take hours,” Mavic spokesman Michel Lethenet told us, and we’re in the same boat here. Mavic are a huge juggernaut of components, shoes and clothing, so here are a few highlights from the vast range.

New computers: USB for easy interfacing

If you’re one of those folks who can’t get enough data about their riding, then Mavic’s new line of Wintech computers with USB interface is worth a peek. “We wanted to make this as simple as possible, with no cables or adapters,” says Lethenet, so all four computers have a USB plug that fits directly into your PC.

The new computers interface with Mavic’s own software which doesn’t just collect data from them – it can be used to set the computer up in the first place. Instead of repeatedly pressing buttons to set your wheel size, for example, you just type it into the PC interface.

Mavic have taken a modular approach with the Wintech USB line, and the head unit will work with sensors on up to four different bikes. Not only that, but after you’ve initially set up options for, say, your road, mountain and commuting bikes, you only have to pair the head unit and sensors once. After that, the computer recognises which bike you’ve fitted it to and adjusts itself accordingly.

As part of the range Mavic will offer a cadence sensor built into an ankle strap, with no requirement for sensors on the bike. There will be four models, from the base Wintech USB at €100 (approx £90/US$145) to the Wintech USB Ultimate with heart rate monitor and altimeter at €240 (approx £210/$350).

Special Service des Course

There was a time when Mavic components bearing the SSC (Special Service des Course – ‘special racing service’) designation were rare, and in theory restricted to pros (though if you knew the right people you could obtain expensive gems like the SSC variant of the GP4 rims, developed to stand the cobbles of Paris-Roubaix). Now SSC links Mavic’s best, race-bred components, and the company's Eurobike booth opened with a tunnel of love showcasing the SSC group.

Some of this equipment isn’t even available yet. The Crossmax Ultimate mountain bike wheels, pictured below, use the same hollow carbon fibre spoke design as the R-Sys road wheels, and are being tested by Mavic’s World Cup racers. But Lethenet said Mavic hadn’t yet decided to make them available. “They’re here to show that we are always developing new things,” he said.

Speaking of R-Sys, Mavic have three new wheels in the R-Sys family, the revamped standard R-Sys, the R-Sys Premium with titanium skewers and the R-Sys SL, which is further lightened by losing features such as bearing adjustment (they’re set at the factory).

Mavic claim the new R-Sys is four times more resistant to side impacts than the first generation version that was recalled earlier this year, and a pair weighs 1,390g. Thanks to extra rim machining and the no-adjust hubs, the SL version is 1,295g/pair.

Also new under the SSC designation is the iO road wheel, a five-spoke moulded carbon fibre front wheel for time trial and triathlon use. This is essentially the popular  iO track wheel with a braking surface so it’s safe on the road, and a quick-release.

SSC also extends to downhill mountain bike racing, with new Deemax Ultimate wheels in Mavic’s trademark you-can-still-see-it-with-your-eyes-closed yellow. At 1,965g they’re staggeringly light for wheels intended to tolerate the rigours of World Cup downhill racing. Like the R-Sys SLs they have additional machining in the rim to literally shave off weight.

Drape yourself in yellow: Clothes & shoes for all situations

Mavic’s range of shoes and clothing gets bigger every year, and you wouldn’t call any of it mundane. Take the new Altium series Helium bib shorts, for example. The pad is sewn into the structure of the shorts rather than being added to the inside so there’s one less layer of fabric to get sweaty, and so that the pad’s stretch isn’t limited by the movement of a layer of Lycra, and it’s billed as a super-lightweight short.

There’s a similarly light Helium jersey for hot-weather rides, plus two new high-end jerseys, Infinity and Stellar, for general riding purposes. We especially like features such as the sweat pocket, which gives you a place to store your phone without it getting corroded, and the sealed side pockets for empty wrappers.

If you ride at night, Mavic have three new tops for you: the Vision jersey and vest, and the Flash jacket. All three come in screaming orange with lots of reflective tape so drivers can’t miss you. Or rather, so that they can.

The shoe range has also been extended and refined, with the most important change across all models being a snugger heel cup to reduce heel lift.

Two new models – Zxellium Ultimate and Huez – now sit above the Zxellium in the road range, and the Zxellium’s off-road equivalent, the Fury, has been refined. The Zxellium Ultimate gets a lighter version of the Zxellium’s carbon fibre sole, with titanium cleat thread inserts.

At a mere 195g per shoe (claimed weight for a UK size 8.5) the new Huez is one of the lightest road shoes around – if not the lightest apart from some custom exotica. Mavic keep the weight down by using wide mesh for the upper, Velcro instead of a ratchet buckle and the Zxellium Ultimate’s SL sole and titanium cleat insert.

On the dirt, the Fury and Chasm shoes have also been revamped, with fit changes and more sole lugs for better grip off the bike.

And there’s more

At Eurobike, Mavic launched two winter gloves, two caps, five socks, a pair of arm warmers, shoe covers, four women’s winter jerseys and jackets, 10 summer gloves, a men’s winter jersey, seven men’s bib tights, women’s summer tops, jerseys and jackets, six women’s shorts and knickers, 21 men’s summer jerseys, jackets and baselayers, seven men’s shorts, bibs and knickers, and 13 shoes. And that’s in addition to over 20 new components. It’s been a busy year at Mavic’s Annecy HQ.

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